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8 men now own the same as the poorest half of the world: the Davos killer fact just got more deadly

It’s Davos this week, which means it’s time for Oxfam’s latest global ‘killer fact’ on extreme inequality. Since our first calculation in 2014, these have helped get inequality onto the agenda of the global leaders assembled in Switzerland. This year, the grabber of any headlines not devoted to the US presidential inauguration on Friday is that it’s worse than we …

Michael Arria – Amazon Worker Jumps off 12-Story Building After Being Put on Big-Brother-Like ‘Performance Improvement Plan’

An Amazon worker was injured in a suicide attempt after jumping off a 12-story company building in Seattle, reports Bloomberg. Authorities did not release the identity of the man, but the story indicates he wrote an email before he tried to kill himself. The email was visible to hundreds of other Amazon workers, and to company CEO Jeff Bezos. The …

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Julia Angwin – Google Has Quietly Dropped Ban on Personally Identifiable Web Tracking

When Google bought the advertising network DoubleClick in 2007, Google founder Sergey Brin said that privacy would be the company’s “number one priority when we contemplate new kinds of advertising products.” And, for nearly a decade, Google did in fact keep DoubleClick’s massive database of web-browsing records separate by default from the names and other personally identifiable information Google has …

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Nancy Hanover – Mark Zuckerberg, philanthrocapitalism and parasitism

Last Tuesday Mark Zuckerberg, co-founder of Facebook and the 16th richest man in America, and his wife Priscilla Chan announced they would be donating 99 percent of their Facebook shares, currently valued at $45 billion, to charity during their lifetime. The gift was announced in the form of a letter to their newborn child announcing the formation of the Chan …

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Ted Rall – Do Not Be Impressed by Mark Zuckerberg’s Phony Generosity

CEO Mark Zuckerberg promises to give 99% of his Facebook shares to charity — eventually. Exact phrasing: the stock, currently worth $45 billion, will be donated “during [he and his wife’s] lives.” He’s 31 and she’s 30, so actuarial tables being what they are, by approximately the year 2065. If Facebook or the Internet or the earth still exist. Whoop de doo. …

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Deirdre Fulton – As Europe’s One Percent Flourishes, Millions Sink into Poverty

On a continent that is home to some of the world’s richest people, most profitable businesses, and most valuable assets—including 342 billionaires—more than 120 million people are at risk of poverty, exemplifying the “unacceptable” levels of inequality sweeping Europe in 2015. That’s according to Oxfam, whose new report, A Europe for the Few, Not the Many (pdf), warns that the excessive …

WASHINGTON POST CATERS TO THE POWERFUL BY DAN FROOMKIN

A fascinating sociological experiment unfolds before our eyes starting this morning, as the Washington Post unveils its new “PowerPost” vertical, subtitled “Intelligence for Leaders.” Post publisher Fred Ryan, in a memo to the Post newsroom leaked to Politico, said the new project would focus “on the subjects that matter most to the people at the center of power.” What we can learn, therefore, is what the editors of …